[Lingtyp] "A New Era in Cross-linguistic databases" conference session at PLM, Poznań, 15-17 September

Cormac Anderson cormacanderson at gmail.com
Tue Feb 23 14:01:55 UTC 2016

We invite submission of abstracts for a one-day workshop session on
cross-linguistic databases to be held at the 46th Poznań Linguistic
Meeting, Poznań, Poland, to be held on 15-17 September 2016. Each paper
should be of 20 minutes duration, with 10 minutes additional minutes for
discussion. Details on abstract submission are available on the conference
website http://wa.amu.edu.pl/plm/2016/.

The diversity of the world’s c. 6,500 languages represents an abundant and
irreplaceable resource for understanding the unique communication system of
our species. Rather than studying just one language, such as English, by
comparing many languages we are better equipped to trace the (pre)history
of the populations that speak them, and to understand the processing
machinery of our brains (Evans and Levinson, 2009).

This workshop focuses on the curation, dissemination and applications of
massively cross-linguistic databases. Existing databases, e.g. PHOIBLE
(Moran et al., 2015), ASJP (Wichmann et al., 2013), WALS (Dryer and
Haspelmath, 2013), ABVD (Greenhill et al., 2008) are not without their
limitations, prompting the active development of larger databases under the
names GramBank and LexiBank at the MPI for SHH in Jena. The present
workhsop aims to cover topics such as:

•    Data curation procedures and protocols (e.g. Forkel 2014)

•    Models and algorithms for inferring historical (areal or genealogical)
relationships between languages (e.g. Muysken et al. 2015, Michael et al.
2014, Dunn 2014, Longobardi et al. 2013, Heggarty 2012, List 2014, Gray
et al. 2013)

•    Models and algorithms for inferring non-historical (functional,
universal) principles from linguistic data (e.g. Symonds and Blomberg 2014,
Dediu and Cysouw 2013, Hammarström and O’Connor 2013, Dunn et al. 2011)

•    Visualization techniques for cross-linguistic data (e.g. McElvenny
2015, Moran and McNew 2015)

Linguistic data of any kind (sociolinguistic, lexical, phonological,
grammatical) is desirable so long as there is a significant
cross-linguistic coverage.

The following speakers have already expressed an interest in participating:

Russell Gray (MPI-SHH, Jena)

Paul Heggarty (MPI-SHH, Jena)

Harald Hammarström (MPI for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen)

Johann-Mattis List (Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris)

Steven Moran (University of Zürich)

Simon Greenhill (Australian National University)
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